AirAg - 1988 Toyota Corolla

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AirAg
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AirAg - 1988 Toyota Corolla

Post by AirAg » Sat, 27 Jun 2009, 23:35

Finally I am getting started after buying the car a year ago. I have had the motor and batteries for 6 months but have been busy at work.
Statistics:
1988 Toyota Seca Hatchback, 5speed, armstrong steering, good condition 250,000km, $1800 unregistered, got it registered no problems
Netgain Impulse9 motor
45 x 90ahr thundersky batteries
Weighed car at start with a full can of fuel and no Pax = 1100kg
I have removed all unnecessary stuff
Gearbox and motor off with a mate who has a lot of cnc machinery to make adapter plate and airconditioner and alternator drives
Going for no clutch and using the clutchplate to make shaft adapter.

Posts:

Engineering, Battery Boxes, Motor/Gearbox
Electrical, Batteries, Controller
Last edited by AirAg on Sat, 09 Oct 2010, 07:14, edited 1 time in total.
Peter

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AirAg - 1988 Toyota Corolla

Post by woody » Mon, 27 Jul 2009, 17:06

Hi Peter,

hope it's going well. My mother in law had an armstrong steering ford laser which she had to give up because she wasn't Popeye...

Are there any other EVers near Goondiwindi?

cheers,
Woody
Planned EV: '63 Cortina using AC and LiFePO4 Battery Pack

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Post by AirAg » Tue, 28 Jul 2009, 00:29

Woody,
The non power steering does not bother me as I have been driving it around for 12 months no worries. Most of my driving is highway so not much turning
Goondiwndi is 400km west of Brisbane so not much interest in electric cars. Our base is 16km out of town and I do the trip twice a day so it is ideal for an EV.
Not much has happened. My mate is doing the drive adapter on the cheap so it has to wait till he is quiet. We are making the battery boxes. 26 are going in the back behhind the rear seat and 20 in the front on top of the motor.
I have taken a leap of faith and imported a synkromotive controller. I am not aware of any others over here so I may be calling for advice if it does not work. We employ a pilot who has an electical trade and worked in a sugar mill but other than that we are babes in the woods.
I will post some photos when we have something to show. There are already plenty of photos of a corolla with the guts ripped out of it on the net.
Peter

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AirAg - 1988 Toyota Corolla

Post by Thalass » Thu, 30 Jul 2009, 15:54

Looks like a great conversion for you, mate.

It will be great to see an EV out in the country, spreading the word and all that. You'll be the go-to guy for the whole region!

It sounds like you work out at a cropdusting station? Sounds like fun, those pilots are crazy! haha
I'll drive an electric vehicle one day.

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Post by AirAg » Thu, 07 Oct 2010, 20:52

I finally got around to doing some work on the car. I have had all the gear for nearly 2 years and the banter from the workplace was getting to me so I had to do something.
This post is all the engineering.

Image

I plan to put the batteries in 2 packs. I put 26 in the rear and 18 in the front. This is the rear battery box, made out of 25mm angle and made for a snug fit. I will fit a plywood cover over it at the end to protect them from the occupants and vice versa

Image

The Front battery box is made the same way but for 18 batteries. It will have a lid to hold them in but the sides and bottom will be open.

Image

I had a mate who has a CNC lathe make up the motor/gearbox adapter plate. We used the old clutchplate and spline which gives us some allowance for off centre errors.

Image

This is the finished product showing the front engine mount attached to the motor face plate. The air conditioner is mounted with a new pulley. I was going to put the alternator back on as well but I didn't think it would fit very well and am currently going with a seperate charger for the 12volt battery. DC-DC converters seem very expensive and also take a lot of space.

Image


Here is the way I ran the main cables under the car. It is 25mm electrical conduit mounted with saddles. I used flexible conduit once I got to each end. I found out later I should have put the two cables tightly together to avoid setting up magnetic fields. but I guess we have to learn as we go along. The third line has the 12volt wire to activate the reat contactor. I intend to run the power cord for charging out the front but if I ever change my mind and need to put it down the back I can run it down here.

Image

I ran the cables around the engine bay in flexible conduit

Image

Here is the engine mounted in the car. The battery box and electonics tray will go over the top of this.

Last edited by AirAg on Sat, 09 Oct 2010, 04:13, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by AirAg » Thu, 07 Oct 2010, 22:55

Well the car is basically finished. I have successfully commissioned the battery pack and given it's first charge. All seemed to go OK although a lot of red led's came on.
Now I cannot test it because the Zilla will not open the main contactor. Looks like a problem with the hairball.
Here are some photos of the finished product. There are still plenty of wires to tidy up and auxilliary equipment to fit, but right now I just want to see it move!! I am more at home with the engineering side but once it comes to electricity and wires I am a novice, so all comments from nit picking sparky's gratefully received. I actually have one on staff but he always seems busy doing something else!!

Image

Here is the rear battery pack with wiring completed and after it's first charge

Image

Here is a view from behind the seats. You can see the contactor which splits the pack in half. Under the pack you can see the main cables going through the floor into the conduit under the floor. On the left hand side you can see the signal wires for the battery modules. I routed them under the door sills to keep them away from the main cables.

Image

Here is the engine bay semi finished. The battery pack has a contactor that splits the front pack in half. There is up to 70volts connected with the packs split but half of this is at the front and half at the back so pretty hard to touch the two ends at once. You can see the electronics tray sitting in front of the battery box. I have designed it so it can be removed without removing any of the wiring to access the motor. The front pack can also be removed entirely by unhooking the main cables should the motor have to be removed.

Image

Here is the engine bay from the other side. This is pretty scruffy yet as this is the side all the wiring comes out. I will be able to lift the electronics completely out to the side of the car without having to unhook anything should I have to access the engine.
The computer is talking to the hairball

For the charging I am going to have the cord coming out the front. You can see the small charger I got from Repco for charging the auxilliary battery, sitting on the mudguard. I am still not sure how to tell the contactors to come on, probably a small door in the grill with a microswitch.
Last edited by AirAg on Sat, 09 Oct 2010, 04:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by AirAg » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 00:43

At Last the car goes!!
After sorting out the problem with the controller I took the car for a drive this week. We have been test driving it up and down the airstrip and have over 100km on it around the farm.
The battery pack charged up with no problems. There are about 5 batteries out of the 44 that seem a bit behind the others but I am pretty happy with the way the pack has balanced.
The car performs a lot better than what I thought. I can do all the driving in 3rd gear from a standing start to 110km/hr. It seems pull about 140amps at 100km/hr. If I was just driving around town I could get away with 2nd gear and a lot smaller motor and less batteries.
Based on the trips so far I should get 60km out of a full charge
Now to get it registered.
I have a TBS fuel gauge installed and have found out that if you have contactors in the pack for safety the gauge will not function properly. It must be connected to the pack at all times or it loses its State of Charge and other information. This means the safety contactors I have in the pack make this gauge useless. After much email discussions with Rod Dilkes and Ian Hooper I have removed the contactors and installed a manual emergecny switch in the drive tunnel between the seats. I also plan to put in a couple of battery isolator switches in place of the old contactors that can be switched off when doing work in the engine bay or the packs.
I also found the hard way - got a zap - that there is a leak to earth through the TBS battery monitor shunt. Disconnecting the wires to the monitor removes the leak. It looks like about 100mA on the gauge and the state of charge diminishes so I need to find it. Anybody shed light on this
Peter

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AirAg - 1988 Toyota Corolla

Post by 7circle » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 07:42

Wow and wohoo! 100ks on it already.

How did you split the pack up with the contactors?
Is the rear pack on the low or high side of the pack?

The contactors opening while the car is off and disrupting the TBS fuel gauge could be solved if your happy with having a resistor across the contactor. This could have a small relay if you still wanted isolation when a big red button is pushed. But the resistor relay could be low power coil. So the main contactor can be off and not drain the pack while not driving or charging.

The TBS fuel gauge only has isolated serial communications port. So the low side of the shunt is the -ve voltage.
I assume your using the "1:5 voltage prescaler kit" this needs to be wired with the low ohm value resistor on the -ve side if it is two element.

Perhaps you need a relay on all connections between the battery pack and shunt. So you know that the TPS fuel gauge in the dash is isolated.

Another type of pre-scaler has three resistors which may suit the floating battery pack better. It has a small center resistor say 50kOhm and the two outside resistors are 100K so you still get 250:50 => 5:1 ratio.
[Edit: this may not suit the location of the shunt resistor. The shunt is shown on the negative side with just wire connections.]

As your battery back is probably floating or untied to the chassis the TBS fuel gage circuit will also be floating too.
This could also show up as Static build up on the car while driving and could cause a zap, so some sort of VDR and capacitor may be needed between the battery pack and the chassis.

There is no ground as the car is on rubber tyres.

And the charger output should also be floating.

Hope this helps.
Last edited by 7circle on Sun, 31 Oct 2010, 20:50, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by 7circle » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 08:07

Looks like you could fit perspex or lexan/polycarbonate platic over the batteries.
Do you plan on covering any of the exposed battery terminals or wiring to fuses and contactors?

Can you still get the spare tyre in the well?

Have you checked the voltages of the
battery pack
input to the controller
output of the controller
motor field
motor rotor

You could have someone load the motor a little with the brake on to check
the wiring connections by measuring the voltages to battery negative with a fair load of amps flowing.
Don't do it for too long as the brushes may over heat.
It should just replicate a hill start. If you need to longer to get more measurements let it cool down for 5 minutes.

You did say "I am more at home with the engineering side but once it comes to electricity and wires I am a novice, so all comments from nit picking sparky's gratefully received." So I hope I'm not being a pain.

Would like to see the results if you think its worth doing and safe to do so.

How heavy is it now?

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Post by a4x4kiwi » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 21:06

Regarding your 'shocking' experience. You should have a small 12v to 12v dc-dc converter to power the 12v side of the TBS to isolate it from the vehicle 12 v system. Like http://au.element14.com/texas-instrumen ... dp/1295924
This was just the 1st one I found online.


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Post by evric » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 21:12

My TBS (E-Xpert Pro) is powered from the pack voltage through the prescaler.
Prius Plug-in Conversion: http://www.evplus.com.au ...Holden Barina EV: http://www.evric.kestar.com.au

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Post by 7circle » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 22:38

Adding an Isolated DC/DC to a shunt measuring circuit isn't going to make it safe to touch, and prevent the Zap.

Matt, The one you linked to is an inverting DC/DC so the output +Ve is linked to the input -Ve. This would link the Chassis to the +Ve of the TPS Fuel Gauge.

The pre-scaler is not an isolation module for the Sensing or powering the TPS pro.

The shunt sensing wires are direct links the traction battery which could be floating.

Any wiring that is linked to the traction battery some say should be in orange conduit.

If you unsure why the TPS pro is giving you a Zap, you need to aware and reminded that over 48V is considered dangerous to open cuts allowing current to bypass the higher resistance of your skin.
It doesn't take much for a wire to prick your skin.
And it only takes mA to cause fibrillation.
Wikipediea: "Currents of only 10 µA can be sufficient to cause fibrillation in this case"

The 1A fuses protect the wiring not your health.
"Your Isolation from the Circuit" protects your health!

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Post by AirAg » Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 23:18

Gee thanks for all the replies, didn't think anyone was reading.
Here is a picture of the car outside for the first time in 12 months with all the starling poo washed off and the mice nests cleaned out.

Image Image

In regard to your questions:
I had the pack split with 2 contactors, one in the middle of the front pack and one in the middle of the rear. It was organised so that the 'ends' were at opposite ends of the car. After finding out that the TBS needs constant power from the pack to maintain the information, and with a lot of emailing to Ian and Rod, I decided to remove them. I put a mechanical push button switch in the middle of the cable going from front to back which makes it relatively safe to work in the engine bay. However I am going to break the front and rear packs with mechanical switches also just as a safety thing seeing I am a bit of a novice around volts. I have already zapped a pair of cutters on the main contactor sense wire to the hairball.
The batteries are just sitting in there at the moment. They are a tight fit and I actually had to plane the edges of the front ones to get them in as I was out by a few mm on the frame. I will put clear platic sheet on top so I can see the battery monitors. The reat pack will be built in with plywood with an acrylic top. Nothing will move and I have calculated all the fastners for the 10g shear requirement.
The spare wheel will still fit into the wheel well.
With regard to the 'shock' I have now traced the leak to the motor. With all other possibilites removed, that is cases all insulated, chargers removed, sensors disconnected, the leak still continues until I remove the B+ cable from the motor to the controller. I have emailed Otmar and he has given me some more tests to try out. My tame electrictian (gave up that to become a pilot) says the leak is very small and we cancelled it out by connecting a 12v light bulb across and the bulb did not even glow. Otmar says 1mA is normal and the 'jolt' may be because of capacitance???? He said the TBS gauge may not be giving an accurate reading and has some tests for me to do. I will get all that deciphered and get back to you on what comes up.
I have not connected the Auxilliary battery because I was concerned about the wiring diagram that wants you to connect it to the shunt which would effectively earth the main pack to the chassis. I have since found out about 'isolating 12v-12v converters' so am chasing that one up.

Last edited by AirAg on Mon, 01 Nov 2010, 12:33, edited 1 time in total.
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